By Ann Burke, RN, CPHRM, CPPS; Sharon Gilmore, MHA, BSN, RN, E-BC, CPHQ, CPHRM; Ann Lambrecht, RN, BSN, JD, FASHRM; Maryann Small, MBA; Anthony Zheng

This article belongs to the Coverys Red Signal Report SM series.

A dramatic increase in opioid use over the past several decades has led to an epidemic of addiction and high-severity injuries, including more than 700,000 deaths. The costs, in the tens of billions each year, are staggering. 

Many healthcare providers have been accused of prescribing practices that fuel addictions. The Coverys claims data in this report demonstrate the significance and costs of not properly following opioid prescribing guidelines. The risk management recommendations offered herein will provide insights to opioid-prescribing clinicians, helping to ensure that patients are managed safely and effectively. 

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No legal or medical advice intended. This post includes general risk management guidelines. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal or medical developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal or medical advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances.